Plant biology is in the midst of a revolution, based on a dramatic increase in the number of crops and noncrop models for which reference genome sequences are available, with a growing subset of these also enjoying sequence data for multiple genotypes that permits massively parallel identi›cation of informative DNA markers useful in breeding and genetics. Several surprising fundamental messages have been revealed by the ›rst 10 sequences that shed new light on the “prehistory” of crop evolution, and the genome sequences empower new approaches to crop improvement. The generation of tremendous volumes of sequence information introduces new technical challenges into plant biology and agriculture-the relatively new ›eld of bioinformatics addresses these challenges by utilizing ef›cient data management strategies, generating and maintaining web-based interfaces to access and submit information, and developing the algorithms necessary to compare multiple sequences and identify homology or conserved motifs in a reliable manner.